SCL Student webinar: "Alternative Paths to Tech Law - an In-House Perspective"

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Conor Courtney, Senior Editor, SCL Student Bytes, LLM Student, University College London

Despina Chatzimanoli, Senior Legal Expert, European Banking Authority
Lorraine Chimbga, Contract Intelligence Executive, ThoughtRiver, SCL Advisory Board Member
Andrew Crystal, Corporate Counsel EMEA, Amazon Web Services
Chris James, Tech & DP Associate General Counsel, HSBC, SCL Fellow

This talk will have an in-house focus but also aims to offer valuable insights into the different avenues law students can explore when starting out in their career. This session will provide the opportunity to:

  • Learn more about life as an in-house tech lawyer ;
  • ask questions;
  • hear the latest advice from leading tech law experts.

For more information about our new student initiative SCL Student Bytes – please go to

Conor Courtney is the Student Bytes Senior Editor for Technology Law, Policy & Regulation. Conor is currently completing his Masters in International Commercial Law at University College London.

Dr Despina Chatzimanoli, LL.M. is Senior Legal Expert at the European Banking Authority (EBA), advising, among other topics, on fintech issues (from AI in finance, to cryptocurrencies and payments). She is also a passionate advocate and user of automation in legal and management work and has been involved in EBA’s internal document management IT project.

Previously she worked for the EBA’s predecessor organisation, CEBS (Committee of European Banking Supervisors), and for the (then) UK Financial Services Authority (FSA) acting as coordinator for the FSA’s participation in the Basel Committee for Banking Supervision (BCBS). Prior to that, Despina worked for international organisations (EPLO, Athens; IDLO, Rome), a Greek publishing house (Nomiki Bibliothiki) and in private practice (in Greece). Despina was an early ‘tech, law and tech law’ enthusiast: she learned the Basic programming language at a young age. In her work for the EPLO (European Public Law Organisation) she headed a project which codified Greek transport and telecommunications law into a CD-ROM for use by citizens and public authorities. In private practice in Greece, she advised on one of the first ever mobile phone game apps in the country.

In recent years she has been active with SCL and in particular as a member of its Women in Tech law sub-committee; she has been training extensively on tech law and computational law matters (with SCL, MIT online Computational Law course; EUI and Harvard Law Schools’ ‘Law and Logic’ and ‘AI and the law’ Academies; and others); and she recently started to learn to code in her free time.

Lorraine Chimbga is originally from Zimbabwe and is an LLB graduate from University College London and the London School of Economics and Political Sciences. She currently works as a Contract Intelligence Executive at ThoughtRiver and is a member of the SCL Advisory Board. Lorraine is also a Future IGNITE Trainee Solicitor at Clifford Chance.

Experiencing the challenges that her first year of law school had to offer, the lack of useful or comprehensive information when making the decision to pursue a law degree, and to address the issues she came across as a mentor, she set up Life of a London Law Student to provide a helpful view of what going through the process of becoming a lawyer (or not) in the UK is like.

Andrew Crystal is Corporate Counsel EMEA at Amazon Web Services. Andrew is a commercial technology lawyer with 10 years of experience working in the IT and services industry. Recognised by The Legal 500 as a Next Generation Lawyer whilst in private practice. Previous private practice experience as a Senior Associate at RPC law firm and previous in-house experience at Google and Accenture.

Chris James is Associate General Counsel at HSBC and has been a DP and Tech lawyer since 2008, with a (semi-)professional coding background since the 90s.